Subject Overview

Geography is multi-disciplinary, drawing together many  parts of the academic curriculum. It includes the study  of social geography, economic geography, cultural geography, Urban Geography, biogeography, environmental  geography and geomorphology. There are many interlinkages  between these different elements.

Geography A Level will leave many further education and career doors open. Most importantly, it will give you both breadth and depth of study. The specific skills that are also required are numeracy and literacy. The Geographer’s ability to analyse and synthesise different information, and the ability to solve problems and communicate both orally and in written form, is an essential skill.

Key Stage 3 (Year 9)

Pupils continue to build on their skills and geographical knowledge through a wealth of practical visits and fieldtrips, along with research-based tasks, investigations into contemporary issues in society and ethical debate. They develop skills to prepare them with the strong academic background necessary to be successful should they decide to take Geography at GCSE. 

Lower Grammar (year 9) topics of study: 

  • Development 
  • China 
  • Natural Hazards (Tectonic and Weather) – Introduction to GCSE 
  • Climate Change – Introduction to GCSE

GCSE (Years 10 & 11)

Over two years students will cover the AQA syllabus, 8035.  

This exciting and relevant course studies Geography in a balanced framework of physical and human themes and investigates the link between them.  Students will travel the world from the classroom, exploring case studies in the United Kingdom, Newly Emerging Economies and Lower Income Countries. Topics of study include climate change, poverty, deprivation, global shifts in economic power and the challenge of sustainable resource use. Students are also encouraged to understand their role in society, by considering different viewpoints, values and attitudes. 

Over the course, pupils develop a range of skills and experiences that will not only be attractive to their future employers, but also give them greater understanding of contemporary issues. The Issue Evaluation paper enables pupils to showcase their ability to assimilate resources from a variety of media to come to a reasoned conclusion; a skill of vital importance for the world of work later in life. 

 There are three units of study in this syllabus.   

  • Living with the Physical Environment – This unit looks at physical processes and systems, their dynamic nature and human interaction with them at a range of scales and in a range of places. Topics are; The Challenge of Natural Hazards, Physical Landscapes in the UK and The living World. 
  • Challenges in the Human Environment – This unit investigates human processes, systems and outcomes and how these change both spatially and temporally. They are studied in a range of places, at a variety of scales and must include places in various states of development.  Topics are; Urban Issues and Challenges, The Changing Economic World and The Challenge of Resource Management. 
  • Geographical Applications – This unit is designed to have elements of synopticity and is an opportunity for students to show their breadth of understanding and appreciation of the inter-relationships between different aspects of geographical study. This unit will include fieldwork opportunities. Geographical Skills - Students are required to develop and demonstrate a range of geographical skills, including cartographic, graphical, numerical and statistical skills. These will be assessed in all three written exams. Ordnance Survey (OS) maps or other map extracts may be used in any of the three exams. 

GCSE Scheme of Assessment 

This is a linear course and pupils sit three exams at the end of Syntax (year 11).  The Physical and Human exams, including Skills (Units 1, 2 & 4) are 1 hour 30 minutes each and the Applications exam (Unit 3) is 1 hour.  The format of the exam papers will be a mixture of data response, short and long answer questions. 

A Level (sixth form)